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TitleExploring the prevalence of in-vehicle distraction in moving traffic: An observational study using camera technology
AuthorsPonte G, Wundersitz LN
TypeConference Paper

Given the crash risk associated with driver distraction [e.g. 1]and the potential increase in in-vehicle technology-related distractions, the development of a method to monitor the prevalence and types of driver distraction over time is important for identifying trends (and potential countermeasures) for such behaviors. Observation of drivers while moving in traffic can provide objective information about the prevalence of specific distractions within the vehicle. Recording video of drivers in traffic is an innovative unobtrusive means of obtaining data on driving-related distractions and avoids issues related to self-reporting errors and the effect of changing behaviors while being monitored [2]. In addition, it allows observations of a large number of vehicles within a relatively short time frame. This exploratory study sought to determine whether camera technology is suitable for observing a variety of distracted driving behaviors among drivers in moving traffic on public roads and to provide an indication of the prevalence of different distracting behaviors by location and gender.


Four locations around Adelaide, South Australia, were selected for video camera observations of distracted driving behavior in low speed and high speed traffic environments. Elevated locations were used so that drivers could be observed using a system of three strategically placed cameras (i) on their approach, from afar (ii) zoomed in to the driverís compartment directly from above and (iii) zoomed in from an angled perspective to capture the driver.

Around 90 minutes of video footage was recorded at each location. For each period of recorded video footage, a 30-minute observation period was selected and used in the analysis to identify any distracted behaviors.

Conference Name7th International Conference on Driver Distraction and Inattention
Conference AbbreviationDDI2021
Conference LocationLyon, France
Conference Date18-20 October 2021

Ponte G, Wundersitz LN (2021). Exploring the prevalence of in-vehicle distraction in moving traffic: An observational study using camera technology. 7th International Conference on Driver Distraction and Inattention, Lyon, France, 18-20 October 2021.